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Lombard man, owner of service station hit by tornado in ’60s, dies at 79

Robert Bartel, 79, of Lombard

Robert Bartel, 79, of Lombard

Everybody at Howard’s Standard hit the floor on that late autumn afternoon in 1965 when a tornado struck the gas station and repair shop at Ardmore Avenue and Roosevelt Road in Villa Park.

Owner Robert L. Bartel was already on the ground, under a car fixing its exhaust system, when the twister peeled off the building’s roof and deposited it in the middle of Roosevelt Road. Concrete blocks and shards of glass went flying in all directions.

Debris from the shop was found as far away as Elmhurst, his family said.

A longtime resident of Lombard, Mr. Bartel, 79, died Thursday, June 30, at home of complications from a recent heart attack, his family said.

Read more at the Chicago Tribune.

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